Working Translations

E. Armand, “Scènes de Noel / Christmas Scenes” (1901)

A church or a temple. Light, many lights. Candles that illuminate vast crucifixes, or a Christmas tree laden with toys, a fir tree whose evergreen branches evoke the image of eternity. Organs whose sonic flights seem an echo of celestial hymns. Carols that remind us of those with which our mothers rocked us to sleep… Handsome gentlemen in frock coats, tight at the waist, with eight shining gleams; polished, pomaded, combed, varnished, tied. Beautiful, elegant, fragrant ladies, studded with jewels, real or fake, whose slightly raised skirts reveal an expensively shod foot at the end of a finely arched ankle… Good, honest families in their Sunday best, made respectable, troops of children whose happy faces the symbolic tree illuminates… Ease, comfort, joy!… all that is good. […]

Featured articles

Gigi Damiani, “Jesus and Bonnot: A Christmas Tale” (FR/EN) (1927)

The gray car is stopped alongside a ditch, at the edge of the woods (which of its nerves has tensed? — which of its arteries has clogged, refusing the vital rush to its heart?) and under the car a young man crawls, thrashes, swears. On the road, his footsteps silent on the carpet of yellowed leaves (for we are in autumn, the sad autumn of all things!) He approaches. He is a blond vagabond, his long hair unkempt, his beard parted at the chin. […]


Albert Libertad, “The Legend of Christmas” (1899)

Once upon a time, a long time ago, around the year 1900, there was a big heap of rocks and mud that the natives at that time called Paris. It was the capital of a country favored with a temperate climate where cereals, vineyards, and the most beautiful fruits grew in abundance. Approaching these heaps of stone, overcoming the pestilential odors given off by them, one saw that it was crossed by roads of all sorts: some wide, packed with fine houses, and others narrow, with, on each side, houses with the look of mousetraps, arranged in tight rows. […]